Call for Cherokee artifacts

The Cherokee Nation is calling for artifacts permanently secured or provided on loan for display at the soon-to-be opened Cherokee National Supreme Court Building Museum.  Phase one renovations are scheduled to be completed the first week in July 2009. 

This venture will be the Cherokee Nation  first wholly owned and operated museum.     As the exterior details are now being finalized, Cherokee Nation is putting out a call for artifacts in three historic areas including the Cherokee National Judicial System, the Cherokee Advocate and Phoenix Newspapers and the Cherokee Language with a request for items ranging from photos, stories and objects to furniture, periodicals and memorabilia.

The artifacts will visually communicate the ability of the Cherokee Nation to survive, adapt, prosper and excel.    The newly designed museum will showcase articles from the past and present that are indigenous to Cherokee Nation and express the passion of its people for self-governance. Some highly desired items relate to the Cherokee Advocate, which was printed in the Cherokee National Supreme Court Building. Written in both Cherokee and English, the Cherokee Advocate was the primary means of the Cherokee Nation to inform its people from 1844 to 1906. It was Oklahoma  first newspaper and, at the time, the only tribal-owned and published newspaper in the United States.     

"We hope to reach as many people as possible with this formal call for artifacts," said David Stewart, CEO of Cherokee Nation Entertainment, which manages the Cherokee Nation Cultural Tourism Department.  "The physical display of these historic items will assist in conveying to the Cherokee people and visitors to the museum the tremendous accomplishments and lasting legacy of the Cherokee Nation government and its people."    

All artifacts permanently donated or provided on loan will be cataloged and processed following museum standard guidelines. Each piece will have the benefactor  name posted near the respective display in recognition of the generous donation and commitment to the preservation efforts of Cherokee Nation history.    

Individuals, families and corporations can make artifact donations by contacting Travis Owens, senior project manager at Cherokee Nation Cultural Tourism, at (918) 384-5929 or email at .      

Southwest Museum Services in Houston is designing and fabricating the interior museum space to create an engaging and interactive guest experience. Past clients include Space Center Houston in Houston, Oklahoma History Center in Oklahoma City, and the Historic Arkansas Museum in Little Rock, Ark., among others.    

The Cherokee National Supreme Court Building, built in 1844, is Oklahoma  oldest public building and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.        

About Cherokee Nation Cultural Tourism Department  
The Cherokee Nation Cultural Tourism Department was created in 2007 to promote the story of the Cherokee people. Efforts by the Cherokee Nation include developing guided community and educational tours, creating tourism partnerships and programs throughout northeastern Oklahoma, and launching a new Cherokee tourism-specific web site. For more information, please visit     

About Cherokee Nation Entertainment  
Cherokee Nation Entertainment is the gaming and hospitality arm of the Cherokee Nation. Cherokee Nation Entertainment owns and operates Cherokee Casino Resort, five Cherokee Casinos, Cherokee Casino Will Rogers Downs, three hotels, two golf courses and many other retail operations in northeastern Oklahoma. For more information, please visit      About Cherokee Nation   The Cherokee Nation is the sovereign operating government of the Cherokee people.  It is a federally recognized tribe of more than 285,000 Cherokee citizens, with its Capitol located in Tahlequah, Oklahoma. Employing more than 6,500 people, Cherokee Nation  annual economic impact in Oklahoma and surrounding areas is more than $1 billion. To learn more, please visit